Car Maintenance is a Two-Way Street
I’m the type of guy who will go out and purchase a vehicle, properly maintain it, then drive it 300,000 miles or more. This isn’t just because this is the industry I’m in — I have a genuine passion for vehicles, and I believe that if you take care of them, they will take care of you just like they are intended to! It’s the nature of the auto world.
April is Car Care Month, and while we all know it’s essential to replace your car’s battery when it starts to become problematic or to get new tires when the tread is worn, preventive maintenance is the true key to having a vehicle that will last you for years to come.
Keeping up with your car not only ensures the safety of the vehicle and provides a sense of dependability, but it’s also proven to help to save on gas. In fact, according to the Car Care Council, maintaining your vehicle can help you save up to $1,200 annually at the gas pump! Lastly, keeping up with the health of your vehicle allows you to preserve its resale value, too. A well-maintained vehicle holds its value much better than a beat-up, rundown car that sounds and smells like it’s falling apart.
While I always recommend consulting your car’s owner's manual and abiding by the manufacturer’s recommendations when it comes to your vehicle’s upkeep, here are some maintenance basics every vehicle owner should keep in mind.
The general rule of thumb is to bring your car in for an oil change every three months or 3,000 miles, whichever comes first. Depending on the driving conditions of the car and the type of oil the vehicle takes, this mileage can be extended. Newer model vehicles have a sensor that will alert you when it’s time to take it in for an oil change, but don’t forget about the filter, too!
Tire and Brake Adjustments
It’s generally advised for the tires on your vehicle to be rotated every 60,000–75,000 miles, and during that check, you can have your mechanic look at your brakes as well. However, if your brakes are making screeching or scraping noises when you press the pedal or feel the steering wheel tugging when you stop the vehicle, this may be a warning sign that new brakes or brake pads are necessary sooner rather than later.
When your car’s engine overheats, it can wreak havoc on other parts of your vehicle. Check your coolant fluid level in the coolant reservoir under your vehicle’s hood often and top it off as needed, so you can keep your engine nice and cool.
Most vehicle batteries have a lifespan of roughly 3–5 years. Each time you bring your car in, ask your mechanic to check that the battery is correctly anchored and the cover is in place to prevent corrosion. If you notice any corrosion, clean it off, as battery corrosion can quickly become problematic and even make it difficult for your car to start up properly if it’s not treated.
In honor of Car Care Month, make sure you check in on your vehicle’s health and bring it in for routine maintenance with us. From my family to you and yours, I wish you a happy Easter. On Easter Sunday, I’ll be enjoying some family time and a great home-cooked meal!